It’s common to want to break free of your surroundings and run away from your problems, but can you actually use traveling to solve your problems?
The tricky thing about problem-solving isn’t just the problem, it’s the way we go about it. Starting in our natural surroundings where we see the same people, perform the same tasks, discuss the same solutions of the problem (the ones that previously didn’t work). When we go about the problem in the same way, with the same people, there is no disruption to our thinking. We might believe we are thinking outside the box, but in reality, more often than not we are just repeating patterns or confirming what we previously thought.
Our unconscious mind is like Google. If we write ‘the world is flat’ into the search bar, we will get thousands of answers. Upon reading some of the articles, our opinions will be confirmed and we’ll leave it there. Maybe the world really is flat.
Other people’s behavior will usually confirm our beliefs too. They might state that the problem can’t be solved, or that there is only one way to solve it.
Why do you need to use traveling to solve your problems?
It is said 97% of what we do is unconscious. We now know that as much as 70% of our unconscious thoughts were put there by someone else. In other words: even our subconscious thoughts aren’t our own.
For fresh ideas and deep problem-solving, we need to disrupt that. Traveling is one of the most underrated ways to go about it. The reason is as simple as it is obvious. When we are in a different place, eating a different breakfast, meeting different people and engaging in different conversations, we begin to think different thoughts.
If we use traveling to solve problems, we can take its effectiveness to a whole new level!
Why? Because problems are local, solutions are usually not.
How do we do it?
- Before you go – Set intentions.
Decide what you would like to your trip to be about. There is a disruption that happens when you decide to change your life. When you tell your brain what you would like to have happen, it will look for solutions. The important thing is also to start with your intentions, not with the location.
To disrupt your patten, chose a location that will challenge your thought.
- Ask yourself – What would I like to avoid?
By getting clear on what you want to take yourself away from, rather than trying to come up with a solution that seems unmanageable, you have started a different thought process. An unconscious focus on the actual theme. If you want to use traveling for problem-solving, then it stands to reason that you should be clear on what you don’t want to use it for (i.e. attracting more problems).
Your mind is always looking for the functioning, and by putting your subconscious into action you have started the process of the mightiest of all problem-solving tools.
While on your travels, as you are having a different breakfast, eating something you normally don’t eat, ask yourself:
- What is hindering me in solving this problem?
- What stands in the way?
- And is there a way, as Marcus Aurelius once said, to make the obstacle become the way?
The paradox is that if we don’t understand what is hindering the problem being solved, we will most likely not see the solution.
- Have different conversations.
Go alone and have unexpected conversations. Preferably; go to a place where you are out of your comfort zone. It is difficult having a transformation when you are surrounded with likeminded people, all reading the same books, streaming the same shows etc…
To really use traveling for problem-solving, you have to disrupt your thought patterns. Go to a place where you don’t understand the language and/or the culture. Bring books that will change your thinking and try to limit current news from your home country.
When you have set your intentions for your trip, taken yourself out of your comfort zone and started to have different conversations…it’s time to document your experiences.
- Document what you experience.
Setting aside time to reflect is essential, so make sure to redirect your thoughts every evening on what you have experienced that day. Note what it means in regards to your problems.
- Did you have enlightening conversations?
- Did you see something that made you realize something profound?
- Did you create feelings within yourself that you previously haven’t dared to confront?
Ask yourself – What is this location is doing to me? Am I overwhelmed with big crowds? Does it feel uncomfortable being alone? Is silence making me stressed? Use the opportunities that the place offers to ask yourself questions and absorb the answers.
Most people, when going on a journey, never take the time to reflect in this way, and therefor miss 90% of the journey they are on. Instead, they are over-saturating their journey with ‘check-off’ locations. Upon returning home, going about their life as before, they soon forget the entire experience. And have thus missed a unique chance of bettering their life.
- Go back to your journal.
In the weeks and months following your trip, go back to your journal to discover what really took place.
- What was the journey within the journey?
- What new insights to your problem did you discover?
Transformation can happen in an instant, it can happen in the following weeks, or it can be so subtle that you don’t realize that you have solved your problem, until months later. Going back to the journal also enables you to see if maybe your values have changed, your thinking is different, or maybe you just go about similar issues in a different way than you did before.
So, if you seek to use traveling to solve your problems…
Remember that our inputs are what leads to outputs. Changing our surroundings, will change our unconscious thoughts, which will lead to changed action and new outcomes. Transformation happens when you go out of your comfort zone and disrupt your patterns. If you feel it is difficult, both deciding on and pursuing this journey, you are right. There isn’t a single person that hasn’t gone through some hardships to get to their wildest dreams.
About The Author
Hilde S. Palladino – A connector, inspirator and crime author, Hilde S. Palladino is first and foremost a true explorer. Having lived on three continents, served as a consultant for embassies, NGO’s and travel agencies, she firmly believe that if we all travelled more consciously the world would be a kinder place.
Find out more about her here: https://thetransformationaltravel.com